Programming…Do you think you are too old to start? That’s what I thought when I was looking for a new hobby at the start of the first lockdown. Things have changed a lot since then. (As of today, we are in lockdown 3.0 🙂 )Now I can build simple apps for iOS and analyze data using Python.
I took my first programming class in high school, more than fifteen years ago. We had lessons twice a week, one hour per session. They first taught us Pascal and then C++. I was really awful at it. Really really awful. I did not understand even the most basic concepts. Luckily I was taking the class with one of my best friends, and she was very kind to help with my programming assignments every day:)
So, before I embarked on my programming journey during the first lockdown, a voice kept telling me that I was not smart enough back in the day, and I’m not smart enough now either. Then I asked myself, “who said I am not smart enough?” Not my parents, not my sister, not my friends… If no one ever told me I was not smart, who did then? I did, of course!!! I kept telling myself that I was too old to start programming, I should have studied better at high school, etc etc.
The thing is, fifteen years ago, I was a different person. I had tens of other classes I had to focus on, and maybe I did not do a great job of organizing my priorities. I was definitely not good at time management back then. And in terms of intelligence, I also feel smarter and more confident now compared to fifteen years ago. Also, we had limited resources back then. I did not even own a laptop or desktop! In terms of the programming software, we had to download compilers, and they were not compatible with every PC etc. There were only a few books available at the school library on the subject, and tutorials on YouTube did not exist back then:)
That got me thinking… We are living in a very lucky era now. We are surrounded by comfort and resources. Installing XCode on the MacBook I’m using is free. Developer pages at Apple provide free resources on how to code efficiently. There are thousands of free tutorials on YouTube. Definitely check out Brian Advent and Code with Chris! And if you are interested in learning Python, please please start with Programming with Mosh. Mosh is the ultimate teacher! If only all my teachers were as efficient in transferring knowledge as Chris or Mosh. But, everyone has a different learning style. If you want, you can even purchase online courses in programming! All you have to do is, basically, to dedicate an hour of your day to study. Learning programming is easier now than ever!
You may be too old to become the next Roger Federer, but you are never too old to learn something new. Please do not put off your dreams any longer. Start today and try to improve yourself 1% a day.
Which new activity will you pick up moving forward?
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